Movie Talk: The Rise of moviemanMDG
Hello, everyone, and welcome to a brand new episode of moviemanMDG’s Movie Talk, where I talk about everything film-related. This is a special kind of episode because I will be talking about something that doesn’t relate to any film or television show. Today, I will be talking about my personal journey to where I am today. Five years ago, there was an idea to bring together two different groups of people: one that is interested in movie reviews and one that enjoys fan-fiction stories featuring some of their favorite characters. That idea became a reality and that reality’s name is moviemanMDG, which describes not just my brand, but also the website that I created. Despite a few setbacks here and there, my site has been going strong for five years, and I have you guys, the readers, to thank for inspiring me to keep on going. But how did I get to this point, you may ask? What inspired me to create this astounding website that’s filled with reviews and crossovers? All of these questions will be answered right now as we take a look at the rise of moviemanMDG.
Every legend has an origin story, so it would make sense that I should have one as well. Now, we’re not going back to when I was born because that will take all week. We’re actually going back to the time when I first started my non-paying career on Youtube, which was 2010. I was on the verge of attending junior year at high school when I decided to have some fun uploading my own videos onto Youtube. I went with the name “moviemanMDG” for two reasons. The first reason is that I’m a big fan of watching movies, obviously, and the second reason is that I thought it would sound cool. Now, this is when I first started making crossovers, right? Well, not really. I actually started my Youtube career with a couple of “let’s play” videos, in which I showcased my video game playing skills to the world. Because I didn’t have the proper technology at the time, I just used my video camera to record the games I played on my television. Those “let’s play” videos consist of “SpongeBob SquarePants: Lights, Camera, Pants” for the Playstation 2, “SpongeBob’s Boating Bash”, and “Megamind: Mega Team Unite”, both of which are on the Wii. I also did a “let’s play” of one of my favorite PS2 games of all time, “Kingdom Hearts”, for the channel, but I wound up putting it in the trash halfway through because to be honest, I wasn’t really comfortable with that run. Later on, I went from doing “let’s plays” to editing different clips of some of my favorite movies and shows with my trustworthy Sony Vegas editing software. During that time, I created some “Youtube Poop” videos, which were pretty inferior to the ones that were made by the other Youtube users, as well as some crossover projects, which were inspired by the “Pooh’s Adventures” videos during the early years of Youtube. Before I went forward with “Ed, Edd n Eddy: The Ultimate Ed-Chronicles”, I made a couple of crossovers that involve one of the recent shows from Disney, “Phineas and Ferb”. If you’ve been following my Youtube channel since the beginning, you might have remembered watching the videos that have Phineas and Ferb crossing over with the likes of “The Lion King”, “Peter Pan”, and “Return to Neverland” before they were sent to the great beyond sometime later. If you guys are still wondering why I deleted them in the first place, it’s because I believed that I could do a lot better with my fan-fiction storytelling. Plus, Youtube wouldn’t stop harassing me with its copyright notices. Every crossover maker’s worse nightmare. Fast forward to the year 2014 when I first decided to pursue my career as a film critic during my college years. I noticed that my friends and family have enjoyed hearing my personal thoughts on the films I’ve seen, resulting in my mother convincing me that I should share them with the world on the internet. So, I did just that, but with a twist. I made it my goal to post movie reviews that are light-hearted and funny whether a film is excellent or terrible, and have fun writing them. I want to be a critic that people can depend on and doesn’t go out of the way to shred a certain film (or the people that are involved) to pieces if they don’t like it because that’s what most of them do nowadays to provide some entertainment, which I found nowadays to be highly annoying and just plain sad. I want to be a critic that explains what they like and what they don’t like about a film in the most mature and humorous way possible because in a world that’s filled with negativity and violence, we all need some happiness in our lives. I got started writing my reviews by using Facebook, but it didn’t quite work out since I keep losing them to the old Facebook junk pile. So, I went with the next best thing a year later, which is Letterboxd, a website that allows users to share their list of films they’ve seen as well as their reviews. They might not be as informative or creative as the reviews by the professional critics, but to me, they work as a reminder of how much I improved as the years went by. Say what you want about my older reviews. I’m proud of them, no ifs, ands, or big old buts about them. Thanks to my reviews, I was able to join a Facebook group that loves movies and respects other people’s opinions. Well, okay, two Facebook groups, one of which is called “Movie Magic Mesmerize Me”. I didn’t last very long with the second Facebook movie group because it’s full of disgusting bullies who wasted their time posting despicable comments towards others and I didn’t want to deal with that type of stuff. 2014 is also the same year when I try the crossover route again, this time with the assistance of another crossover lover, Andrew St. Germain (aka “B-Master Animation”), and my personal favorite cartoon from my childhood, “Ed, Edd n Eddy”. After making my first crossover with the show, “Ed, Edd n Eddy: The Rise of Maleficent”, I formed an idea of making a crossover series based on it, which would pay homage to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and that idea is called, you guessed it, “Ed, Edd n Eddy: The Ultimate Ed-Chronicles”. Starting with “Transformers: Legend of the Black Cauldron”, I make projects that combine themselves to make several big story arcs, or “sagas” as I would like to call them. My personal mission with my creations is to create compelling fictional stories and pay respect to the source materials I’m using. So far, I have been doing quite well despite suffering a bit from a few creative differences with my partner Andrew. These two things I had done have already created a path to a better future for me despite having to balance them with my personal stuff in life like school, college, taking care of my family, and my job at the cinema. Gotta earn some money somehow. After finally graduating from college in 2015, my real journey begins.
The summer of 2015 saw another success in my crossover business in the form of “Transformers: Legend of the Black Cauldron”. Sure, I still had to deal with my job, my family, my reviews, and Youtube constantly striking me with copyright claims, but in the end, it turned out as well as I hoped it would. But after that, things started to get more…problematic. Remember when I mentioned that Youtube keeps bothering me with the copyright claims? Well, it didn’t seem like a major issue with my first two “Ed, Ed n Eddy” crossovers, but for the ones afterwards, it was starting to become more of a threat. It started with the third installment in the “Ultimate Ed-Chronicles” series, “Ed, Edd n Eddy meets the Penguins of Madagascar”, which is a crossover that’s based on the “Madagascar” spin-off film. After making the first few parts of the project, I attempted to upload the first part onto Youtube and, surprise! It was blocked worldwide the second it became available. I tried everything like shortening the clips and shortening the length of the part, and I still couldn’t get it to stay on the website. It’s like me playing basketball with Youtube. Every attempt I made to get a good shot, Youtube kept getting in my way and blocked it. It’s unfair, but it’s also fair at the same time because personally, I didn’t want to get in trouble with the law. Because of this, I was certain that I would place my focus only on my reviews in order to pursue my long-time goal of being a professional film critic. Sometime later, my mother mentioned an idea of creating a blog for me to store my reviews and get recognized more easily. I thought about it for a while and soon after, I decided to do just that in early October. Using a blog-creating website known as Weebly, I created a site that allows me to share not only the most friendly reviews on the planet, but also my crossover creations. I tested things out by posting my review of Guillermo del Toro’s “Crimson Peak” on my blog, and I immediately realized how simple it was to insert words and photos on the post. That’s when I decided to use my blog as my main source for movie reviews. I also decided to share my posted reviews via Letterboxd, Facebook, and Twitter in order to reach a wider audience. Posting reviews on my blog proved to be an easy task for me, but posting my crossovers? That’s the true challenge. I gave myself a test to see if Weebly would accept the videos I made, and believe it or not, I actually passed. I haven’t gotten a single email from the website in terms of copyright (well, not yet, at least), so I proclaimed that my blog will also be the official home of “The Ultimate Ed-Chronicles”, and the rest is history. As the years went by, I was able to improve myself not just with writing reviews, but also with editing. They might not be on a professional level, but who cares? As long as I’m proud of my style, that’s all that matters.
In conclusion, the main reason why I got to this level of success in the first place is that I relied on three simple things: balance, determination, and support. I was able to find a way to balance what I love with living a normal life, ranging from taking care of my family to working at the cinema. If I focus more on one thing rather than the other, then everything will fall apart faster than building blocks. I always find the time to schedule my break times along with my work times so that I don’t get too stressed out with both of them. I also have a sense of determination that allowed me to use my interests to show my creativity to the entire world, whether it’s reviewing movies or working on my projects, and I wouldn’t have that much determination without the support of my friends, my family, and my fans. Without them, I wouldn’t have the strength to be where I am today. With that in mind, I want to express my thanks to those who are still inspiring me to keep on going, especially you, the reader. It has been an unusual journey for me so far, and I’m glad that I’m still taking it with you guys. Whatever obstacle we might face in the future, I’m sure that we can get through it together. Here’s to another five years of reviews, crossovers, and imagination.
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